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Analyzing a frame in YOUTH

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By Jordan Csigi (Ebert Young Writers Participant)

Youth is filled with a lot of beautifully composed shots but the one that was imprinted into my mind took place within the first 10 minutes of the film. Michael Caine plays Fred, a retired maestro living in a Swiss Spa and is being given the opportunity to perform for the Queen but he refuses to do so. Meanwhile being asked, we see Paul Dano’s character, Jimmy tree listening in on the conversation. As he is listening, it cuts to Jimmy sitting straight down the center frame with Fred and the Buckingham worker as is they are sitting on his elbows as he eats. It’s as if Jimmy is sitting at the table with them and speaking directly into each of his ears. Another detail that adds more to the frame is the people on the far sides of it. On the right side we have security of some sort for Buckingham palace. Then on the left side we have the retired people relaxing and enjoying their meals in all white clothing. The contrast between these two could be about the conversation that is taking place, should Fred remain retired or should he perform for the Queen?

As a part of our Ebert Young Writers Program for the Arts, we will be publishing the participants reviews and interviews they produce for the workshop on the official HIFF blog. 

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